chapter  5
24 Pages

‘False hopes and frustrations’

The absence of a capital programme, 1948–59

Remedying even the most glaring deficiencies in the hospital stock inherited by the NHS would have required substantial capital investment; considerable further effort would have been required even to ameliorate spatial and sectoral inequalities in hospital provision. However, no concerted attempt was in fact made, during the early post-war years, to do so. Some ten years after the NHS was founded, capital expenditure remained well below estimates of its pre-war level. A legitimate question is therefore why the Ministry of Health was so unsuccessful in obtaining capital funds.